Disclaimer: I do not own the Teen Titans
Total Wipeout: American was currently playing on the television. Victor, Garfield and Richard were watching it enthusiastically. Their cheering was a bit immature for their age but it was not like they cared.
"Quick! Dude, jump! Jump!" Garfield encouraged a man on the television when it was blatantly obvious that he could not hear him.
"Oh, oh, oh, oh! Darn, he fell in!" Victor slammed his hand down on the coffee table to show his frustration.
"I told you we should've cheered for the redhead!" Richard told them. He eyed their empty bowls which were previously full of unhealthy snacks. "I'll go and refill these." He picked up the two bowls and wandered out of the room into Victor's kitchen as they were situated at his abode. The show had switched to adverts so Victor leaned back against his leather sofa for maximum comfort. Garfield began looking at his fingers, his eyes showing that he was anxious.
"Hey...Victor...um...I need to talk to you about something." Garfield started.
"What's the matter, Gar?" Victor asked him, a little concerned by his tone of voice.
"Well...maybe this'll explain it." Gar reached into delves of his pocket and withdrew a small, black, velvet case. Victor rushed to the conclusions in a matter of moments.
"You got Rachel a wedding ring?" Victor stared at the case. Gar gave him a satisfied smile.
"Yeah. I thought it was about time, y'know. We've been dating for five years now, we can't just stay at the same place forever...y'know what I mean?" Gar had the slightest hint of a smirk. But he hastily added: "But I'll wait till she's ready of course!"
"Gar, you sure you're not just advancing in your relationship cuz of Richie?" asked Victor seriously. He was referring to peer pressure. It was unlikely this was the case but it could happen. Gar shook his head furiously.
"No, dude! I really want this. What I'm worried about is whether Rachel wants it to." Gar said, trailing off. What if she refused? What if she wasn't ready? What if she didn't love him? So many questions, unanswered. It was almost unbearable.
"Of course she will." Victor sounded sincere.
"I hope so. I guess she did always smile at me, even when I was acting stupid." Gar smiled to himself at the past memory. "Right, so all I need to sort out now is how I'm gonna tell her."
"One thing you shouldn't do- do the corny thing with bending down on one knee. Rachel would hate that. You know that, Gar." Victor advised.
"Right. But I can't just say 'Yo! You wanna marry me!', can I?" Gar said. His mind was searching for ideas, slowly getting a bit frantic. The proposal had to be perfect as Rachel was the perfect girl.
"C'mon man, we'll think of something. When are you planning on proposing to Rachel?" asked Victor. Gar mumbled something incoherently. It sounded a bit like 'buffet'.
"Today..." Gar whispered. Vic's eyes enlarged to twice its size.
"Say what to what?" Richard had returned to the lounge with a landline phone in hand. He had not appeared to have refilled the bowls and the adverts had finished on the television but no one took notice.
"Hey, who were you talking to?" Victor asked Richard when he spotted the phone clasped in his hand.
"I was talking to Roy. He says he's hosting a party tonight, starting eight." He flopped down on the sofa beside Victor. "Fancy going?"
"I dunno..." Gar admitted which was mildly surprising as he usually was the first one to accept a party invitation. "I have a lot to think about today."
"Wait, you didn't tell me about Victor's outburst. What's Gar done, Vic?"
"Well, he's planning to propose to Rachel but he doesn't know how to. And he wants to propose to her today! I mean, shouldn't he wait a bit or something?" Victor said.
"Hey! I've been waiting for months actually but I only told you today!" Gar protested.
"And you haven't thought up with anything?" Victor raised an eyebrow. He shook his head.
"I wasn't always the creative type." He mumbled. He stared the velvet case in his hands.
"Can we see the ring?" asked Richard.
"I sorta wanted Rachel to see it first." Gar admitted. Richard and Victor understood. Richard reached over to the remote and turned the television off. Gar and Victor looked at him.
"What? We need to help Gar!" Richard exclaimed. "Well, first, don't do what I did. I almost killed myself, but I guess that's where Love can lead you..."
"Wait, what did you do? Kori never told us and neither did you." Gar and Vic said.
"Really?" Richard raised an eyebrow in surprise. "Not even Rachel? She was there too." They shook their heads so Richard explained, with great detail, the event when he proposed to Kori.
"Oh...we wondered how you skipped the trip with Bruce." Victor mused. "Did you sort it out with Bruce?"
"Yeah, after some arguing, he finally gave in and even gave me a huge budget for the wedding." Richard grinned.
"Hmm...so you said Kori was pretty happy..." Gar started. "How did you exactly propose to her?" Richard thought for a while, thinking back a few months. He began explaining and he included things like 'wit' and 'people watching' and 'not doing the corny thing when they bend down on one knee' which was almost identical to what Vic said.
"Wow dude." Gar said slowly. "That didn't help me in the slightest." Richard deadpanned.
"Maybe some music will help you think." Victor suggested after a moment's of silence. "It helps me."
"I don't have my iPod on me." Gar pointed out. Victor reached into his pocket and withdrew his iPod. He handed it to Gar.
"Go on the 'think' playlist." Victor advised him. Gar looked at the iPod, examining it.
"You have a think playlist?" Gar repeated.
"When I study and stuff or, hence the name, when I need to think." Victor chuckled.
"Okay, thanks dude." Gar got up and went into the kitchen for some peace and quiet.
Gar had never been set loose on Vic's iPod before. It could be named as an honour as Victor was a little protective over his iPod ("Don't touch it man: Or you will see my fist in your mouth!") so Gar couldn't help having a little go at surfing around his music. He decided to be free with all Victor's music as the 'think' playlist was a bit boring and not upbeat enough for Gar. However, as he flipped through the songs he discovered most of it was rap music with rappers speaking incoherent words. He was going to return to the think playlist until a song grabbed his attention and ears. He stopped surfing and listened to it and its words. It was pretty upbeat not at the extreme; it was loud but not 140 decibels...
A smile etched upon Gar's face as the urge to shout 'Eureka!' came to him. He ran out the kitchen and into the lounge where Victor and Richard had resumed to watching Total Wipeout: American again. Victor, from the corner of his eye, spotted Gar enter and sit down on the sofa.
"Hey, you finished already? Got any ideas?" Victor asked Gar. He nodded, looking a little excited.
"Hey Rich, what type of party is Roy hosting?" Gar inquired.
"It's gonna be at his house and there's a little Karaoke going on." Richard rolled his eyes but Gar's eyes had a glint in them.
"Hmm..." He mused. "Oh, but who else did he invite?"
"Erm...us three, Kori, Rachel-"
"Great!" he announced. "Vic, I'm leaving now so-"
"What?" Victor turned around to look at him as he was already halfway to the door. "Why?"
"Need to work on my proposal." Gar grinned at the two of them before departing the house. It took Vic a couple of seconds to realise that-
"He took my iPod!"
Victor had offered Gar and Richard a lift to Roy's house as long as Gar returned Victor's iPod. Gar chuckled nervously and promised he will. Both Victor and Richard were curious of what Gar was planning for Rachel. It was on their minds for a while; an itching pest was nagging them as they endeavoured to figure out Gar's arrangement for his proposal.
Victor stopped his car in front of Gar's house at 7:45pm. It would take a bit of time to travel to Roy's mansion (but not as big as Richard's he'd like to point out) so picking up Gar early was a wise thing to do. They only had to wait for a couple of minutes outside Gar's abode before he came out calmly, smiling. He looked triumphant judging from his facial expression. He slid into Vic's shiny, 4X4 car (Richard and Victor was sure he was really happy, he hadn't even commented about the environment's risk) with a rather big grin on his face.
"Hey Gar." Richard greeted him, a little wary by his unnatural good mood. "What's up?"
"The ceiling." Gar replied.
"We really need to stop asking you that question." Victor chuckled. Then he decided to drop the bomb. "How are you going to propose to Rachel?" Richard turned around in his shotgun seat and Victor glanced at Gar by the rear-view mirror but then looked out onto the road to avoid an accident. But unfortunately, Gar didn't give them the right information.
"Sorry dudes, you'll find out when we get there." He grinned mischievously at the both of them, finding it amusing to hide something that they desperately wanted to know. They didn't ask him again but instead conversed about generic things that didn't really apply to anything of importance.
The music was pumping up loud and clear in Roy's large ballroom (used for different purposes) but it was obvious no one was singing yet. Richard, Victor and Gar were one of the first ones around as the security recognised them from the many visits they had made to the mansion so they were let in early. A question arose about the fact the music was at a high decibel but three didn't seem to mind. In fact, they enjoyed the fast, upbeat music. Some people were already dancing but they didn't recognise any of them so they started scouring the area for Roy.
Fortunately though, he found them first.
"Hey, what's up with my peeps?" he laughed. "Gar, don't make the joke."
"Wasn't planning to." Gar replied. "I think it's getting old anyway."
"Whoa, never thought I'd hear that from you, Gar!" Roy threw his arm around his shoulder as a friendly gesture and then moved on to Victor and Richard. Gar listened to their conversation but didn't participate as much as he would normally.
"Is Jade here? You must've invited your girlfriend." Richard said.
"Course she is, she's over there." Roy nodded his head in the direction of a girl with long, silky black hair and was dancing as if she was having the time of her life. "Speaking of her..." he left the group to silently 'chat' with his girlfriend while Victor, Richard and Gar were left by themselves.
"I'm still wonderin' how Roy got his 'rents to have a party." Victor muttered, as much as you could do over the loud music.
"Me too... you okay Gar?" Richard asked his friend concerned. Gar was looking down at his feet. He looked up immediately when Richard called his name. "Uh, what? Yeah, I am."
"Anything wrong?" Victor asked him.
"No, no!" he said quickly, shaking his head. "Just a little nervous...y'know with my prop-"
"Richard! Victor! Gar!" A familiar voice called their names and they glanced at the direction of the sound. The owner of the voice rushed up to them and pecked Richard on the cheek. He couldn't help flushing slightly.
"How are you all!" Kori shouted over the music.
"We're great, Kor! How you've been?" Victor said at the same volume.
"I've been wonderful!" she exclaimed. She looked at Gar. "Oh! Gar! Rachel is here... Rachel!" Kori yelled behind her and up came a person who Gar loved with all his heart.
"Hey Rachel." He said, louder than the usual conversational tone. She gave him a smile, larger than her usual ones.
"Hey, Gar. I assume you've been well?" Rachel inquired, stepping closer to him so Kori could be nearer to her fiancée.
"Yup, been well and good!" Gar grinned. He kept his emotions in check as he tried not to predict the worse case scenario. She's so pretty tonight...
"Great to hear that." Rachel then kissed Gar on the cheek, something she did not ever, but not often either. This somehow boosted Gar's self-esteem.
"Hey, Rachel and Gar. Want to get something to drink?" Richard offered. Victor had gone off with his fiancée, Karen Beecher.
"Are you sure? You mean alcohol?" Rachel said cautiously.
"Yeah, don't worry though!" Richard added hastily. "The security thoroughly checked everyone so they weren't bringing in any additional alcohol or drugs. There's only a little alcohol but it's not enough to get anyone drunk. Some people are keeping an eye on frequent visitors." Rachel nodded, feeling a little less cautious. She then turned to Gar. "Coming?"
"Yeah. But I'll just have water."
Gar sipped his water delicately while Richard did the same, expect with alcohol and much less of it. Kori had gone for cola as did Rachel. Then the two wandered off together to 'discuss' matters while Gar and Rachel were left on their own.
The reason Gar had chosen water as his beverage was so it would clear his throat as he heard other drinks often did the opposite.
"Rachel, to be honest, I'm a little surprised you came. You don't usually enjoy these types of parties." Gar started. Rachel shrugged.
"Well, nothing else was happening and Kori forced me to come here but I mostly came here to see you." Rachel replied, smiling at him. Gar didn't realise but his cheeks tinted pink.
"I appreciate that Rachel. You must really like me, coming to place you hate." Gar smirked. He tried to keep his normal personality but all the time thoughts whizzed through his brain. Whenever your throat gets dry, drink water...I wonder if she'll accept...what if she didn't love me...I hope my plan works...
"I see Roy's having fun." Rachel remarked, indicating Roy who was in lip-lock with Jade Nguyen. Gar couldn't help picturing Rachel and him in that position...it was uncommon for them to show much affection as other couples did but that was how they preferred it. He and Rachel swerved away from Roy and Jade and began talking about various topics such as books (even Gar could participate in that now), people, T.V. shows (Rachel admitted she enjoyed Total Wipeout: American) and other minor subjects.
Gar was enjoying himself immensely and even got so intrigued by Rachel, he forgot about his troubled thoughts every once in a while. However, when he did remember, he always had a sip of water to keep his throat moist and clear.
It surprised everyone when the D.J. announced a slow dance was coming up as Roy wasn't usually the type of person to enjoy those type of dances, especially at such a party! The D.J. said everyone should pair up and that was a very easy task for Kori and Richard who linked hands immediately. When the music started, they made themselves revert to the right position and they started swaying from side to side, going with the momentum of the music.
"I love you eyes Richard," Kori commented, continuing from their previous conversation.
"I seriously can't count how many times you've told me that, Kori." Richard smiled at her.
"I can't express it enough." Kori said simply. "It was thing that first attracted me to you when I first met you."
"Really?" Richard was a little puzzled how Kori could remember such a thing. "Back in Middle School?"
"Yes." She said softly, smiling back.
"But that was so long ago..." Richard murmured.
"How could I forget the first time I met my true love?" Kori whispered so only Richard could here. He kissed her on the tip of her nose and she couldn't help giggling at the touch. Richard's sapphire blue eyes caught a glimpse of Rachel and Gar who also seemed to be having a tender moment.
"Hey look, Gar seems to be enjoying himself..." Richard said. Kori looked at them and a smile appeared on her face.
"Aw, they're so cute..." Kori sighed. Richard privately agreed to that statement.
"I wonder when he's gonna propose to her..." he said to himself without thinking. Kori heard him and her eyes widened.
"Propose!" she squeaked, louder than intended.
"Sssh!" he hissed. Some people nearby looked at them weirdly but did nothing else. "Yeah, he said he was going to propose to her but he says he wants to do it differently...y'know how I proposed to you."
"It was an odd but romantic way to propose." Kori commented, laughing softly. Richard looked at Gar again but he didn't make any movements or any retrieving of the black velvet case. They simply kept looking into each other's eyes. Of course, Richard didn't want to rush him or anything but he was a little anxious to find out what Gar's ideal proposal was and for Gar's sake, he hoped it wasn't anything stupid. Finally the song ended and temporary squealing of the microphone was heard. Said microphone was in Roy's hand.
"I hope you guys enjoyed that." His voice boomed all around the room. "Now, it's time for what you all been waiting for: Karaoke! Who wants to be first?" Richard, Victor, Kori, Rachel and Gar held back as Toni Monetti snatched the microphone from Roy (he merely chuckled) and hissed her song to the D.J. and started singing. She was bold, brash and a little bad when she sang but no one seemed to mind. Everyone clapped in rhythm to the music as she nodded her head to the little beats. She seemed to know the song pretty well, Gar noted, and there was a little twist in his stomach.
When she finished, she bounded off the stage and headed straight for Garth Waters while Roy began inviting a second person to sing. A girl, who Gar had never met before, went up on stage. After telling the D.J. her preferred song, she started singing. She had quite a good voice. She swung her long blonde hair to the music and she even started dancing a bit. She caught Gar's eye and she gave him a seductive wink. Rachel noticed and she glowered at the girl. She had saw Rachel's glare and stumbled a bit but no one noticed.
A couple of other singers went by, some good and some extremely bad. Nevertheless, everyone was enjoying themselves. Finally, Roy announced it was the last chance for anyone to sing Karaoke.
"Anyone up for some singing?" Roy said into the microphone. Much to all of his friends' surprise, Gar walked up to the stage. Victor and Richard were agape, Kori was surprised and Rachel scarcely believed Gar could sing. Gar felt himself growing nervous as he stepped closer and closer to the stage with Roy smiling at him. He handed him the microphone and whispered 'good luck', avoiding the microphone. Gar felt himself get a little sweaty but fortunately, it was only at the back of his neck so no one noticed. He composed himself as he glanced around the crowd, noticing Victor, Richard and Kori's surprised gazes and Rachel's smiling one. He whispered his song to the D.J.
"Because you Live by Jesse McCartney." He said.
"I don't have that." The D.J. said. Gar panicked a little before remembering he still had Vic's iPod in his pocket. He gave it to the D.J. who plugged it in the speakers.
"It's the Karaoke version." Gar whispered. The D.J. found the same song and pressed play. Immediately, a song with the piano as the base with a little guitar. The verse came in and Gar started singing.
This shocked everyone.
Victor and Richard resisted the urge to shout out loud, Kori felt tears spring into her eyes when she took in the meaning of the song and Rachel... she was awestruck. Completely, utterly awestruck. She never knew Gar had such a great voice and what made everything more special was that he was singing to her. He often glanced at her which caused a couple of people to follow suit but Rachel didn't care. All that mattered was that Gar was singing to her with such meaning she had never heard from him.
Rachel was sure none of it fake, she was sure it wall genuine. She blinked away the tears of emotion from her eyes as Gar sang strongly and proudly. Gar felt all his nervousness melt away as he belted out the words. Some people even began singing along but only on a couple of lines. They left him to do the rest, left him to show all his feelings.
It felt like a lifetime while Gar sung the song to Rachel- a wonderful lifetime. Much to Rachel's despair, the song ended at a soft note. A thunderous applause commenced and if everyone was not already standing up, it would've been a standing ovation. A sense of achievement and happiness washed over Gar as he smiled at the crowd and Rachel. The applause finally ended and Gar began to speak.
"That song... that song is dedicated to my girlfriend, Rachel Roth!" Gar said her name loudly so everyone could hear. The cheering started again and it took Rachel a few moments to realise she was meant to go up on the stage. She did so and stood next to Gar. He smiled at her and she smiled back.
"Did you enjoy it?" he whispered.
"Of course I did." Rachel said passionately. Gar brought the microphone up to his mouth.
"Before I leave this stage, I would like to ask Rachel a question." He turned to her completely, reached into his pocket and brought out the black, velvet case. He refused to break eye contact with her as he opened the case.
"Will you marry me?" Instead of clapping and cheering, it was quiet. He opened up the case which revealed a beautiful amethyst and emerald ring, the gems bonded together on a band of expensive gold. Everyone looked hopefully at Rachel who was stunned. She couldn't believe it. Gar actually was proposing to her! To her! Not any other girl...her! And the ring was incredibly beautiful...She was lost for words but finally caught her tongue.
"I... yes!" Rachel wrapped her arms around him tightly, causing Gar to drop his microphone onto the floor. He was shocked that Rachel was hugging him but in a good way. Now, the loud shouts ensued.
"Want to get some privacy?" Gar whispered in her ear.
"That would be ideal." She whispered back. The two crept off the stage and out the back door, unnoticed.
Roy's back garden was a beauty, especially at night. Gar had no idea what time it was but he guessed it was around 10:30pm. The cool air whipped their faces but that was hardly a factor.
"Gar... I... can't believe it." Rachel breathed, eyes sparkling. "You... you did all that for me. What can I say? I'm speechless."
"Good..." Gar whispered as he leaned in and kissed her on the lips. She kissed him back with passion and love. Gar and Rachel never, ever had felt any more elated in their entire lives. It had to be the best night ever. Gar let himself stay attached to Rachel a little longer before pulling away reluctantly.
"I love you." He said, looking into her eyes, not blinking.
"I love you too." She whispered. "I love you so much Gar. I've always loved you; I've waited for this moment for some time. I have to say, I'm surprised it was here. I never would've guessed."
"Me either." Gar admitted, chuckling. "But, you know what? I'm over the moon you agreed to marry me."
"How could I say no?" Rachel smiled- she couldn't remember the last time she smiled so much. She stroked Gar's face lovingly, feeling how soft his face was, how handsome he looked under the moonlight. It was the same for him: he had never set eyes on anyone so beautiful, other than the girl standing in front of him.
"I can't express how much I love you." Rachel murmured. Gar smirked, a devious thought in his mind.
"I know how we can get started..." he said. He leaned in and started kissing her while he caressed her softly down her back...
Ahhh! Something...a little different, would you say? I'm not used to writing about adults so tell me ways to improve this. Quite cheesy and fluffy, isn't it?
By the way, I want to thank ShadowoftheDusk for his song suggestion: Because you live. It's awesome! Type in 'Because you live' in the youtube search engine if you desire to listen to it.
Reviews will be very appreciated.
P.S. I'm not sure whether 'Total Wipeout: American' exists...